Stocks Headed for a Higher Finish

Stocks are headed for a higher finish today, with all three major indexes in green in late trading. Stocks have edged higher on the back of some robust U.S. economic data. However, the gains have been limited as investors remain cautious ahead of automatic spending cuts or sequester, which take effect today.

At last check, the Dow Jones was trading 0.17% higher at 14,079.06, the S&P 500 was trading 0.19% higher at 1,517.62, and the Nasdaq was trading 0.29% higher at 3,169.41.

Healthcare sector is leading the gains in the S&P 500 in late trading today. At last check, the sector was trading 0.52% higher. Services sector has also edged higher in trading today. At last check, the sector was trading 0.39% higher. Transportation sector is up 0.24% in late trading today. Basic Materials sector has fallen sharply in trading today following some weak economic data from China. At last check, the sector was down 0.82%. Conglomerates are currently trading 0.42% lower.

Deckers Outdoor Corp. (NASDAQ: DECK) shares have been among the biggest gainers in trading today. Shares of the Goleta, California-based company are soaring after it reported its fourth-quarter financial results. At last check, Deckers Outdoor shares were trading 15.64% higher at $46.73.

Groupon Inc. (NASDAQ: GRPN) shares are also rallying in trading today after the company announced the departure of CEO Andrew Mason. GRPN shares were last trading at $5.20, up 14.90% from Thursday’s closing price.

McDermott International (NYSE: MDR) shares have plunged in trading today after the company reported its financial results for the fourth quarter. At last check, McDermott International shares were trading 16.43% lower at $10.63.

European markets ended mostly lower earlier in the day, with the EURO STOXX 50 Index closing 0.64% lower. Asian markets ended on a mixed note overnight, with the Nikkei 225 Index closing 0.41% higher at 11,606.38, and the Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong closing 0.61% lower.



Ed Liston is a senior contributing editor at An active market watcher and investor, Ed guides an independent team of experienced analysts and writes for multiple stock trader publications. He is widely quoted in various financial publications on the Internet. When Ed is not writing about stocks, investing in stocks, talking about stocks, or otherwise doing something stock related, he likes to go sailing and fishing in his yacht.